It is 4th December 2018. We celebrate the memorial of saint John Damascene, doctor of the Church. The readings are from Isaiah 11:1-10, 11-14; and the Gospel from Luke 10:21-24. Peace and justice come by the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. We all long to have peace by all means. We wish to be treated justly by everyone whom we know and work with. At times we are misunderstood, mistreated and abused verbally and emotionally when we have refused to acknowledge the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. People who live in the Spirit always guided, protected and provided by the hidden God who is ever active. Without the blessings of the Holy Spirit, we cannot live with the difficult people. We end up frustrated and lose our peace with people who always oppose us. God wants to be amidst us through God’s only beloved Son Jesus, who is the shoot that is endowed with the Spirit of God and filled with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The first reading speaks of Jesus as hopeful shoot for the humanity from the descendant of David. Jesus is the second David. Jesus will be greater than the original tree. God’s Spirit has rested on Jesus to the fullest. The Messiah is the God’s promise fulfilled and the descendant of the David rule for ever. The prophet Isaiah mentions all the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit such as wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord in this passage. The kingdom of Jesus is marked with truthfulness and faithfulness. Jesus will never go by appearance and hearsay. Peace is offered to all of us who are truthful and faithful to Jesus and to all the people who would accept the offer of the Lord. There is no room for animosity and hatred when we breathe peace and justice. What is naturally opposing each other in and around us will begin spontaneously living together with the peaceful confinement and blessings of the second David, when the conditions of truthfulness and faithfulness met. We all need to promote peace and justice in every way possible. It is not enough that we belong and live in a peaceful and just nation but to practice peace and justice is the invitation for each one of us. Let us not condemn the darkness only. What have we done to promote peace and justice so far in our personal lives? How much time and resources we render to a life in the spirit? Are we treating other in fairness and truthfulness? Unless we show justice to the poor and the oppressed, we cannot have peace in our hearts. A time of peace is guaranteed only in Jesus. Nature will return to the original plan of peace and harmony in God’s time through Jesus. The responsorial Psalm praises, “Justice shall flourish in God’s time, and fullness of peace for ever.” (Ps.72:7). The Gospel invites us to know Christ and that is true spirit of the Advent. Knowing requires the full participation of our spirit. It is not merely a scholarly and intellectual knowing of Christ that would lead to spiritual pride rather it is through trust and humility of a child-like confidence. Unless we know Jesus, we cannot communicate with God. In order to know, we must list to Him. The mission of Christ was to reveal the Father to all people. We are so privileged to know Christ in the Church and we are responsible to follow Him and lead others in order that everyone of us live in peace and harmony in the presence and belief of the Lord. May you have a good day. God bless you.

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